I was one of the early users of Stack Overflow (the granddaddy of the software that runs this site) and one of the things I notice here is that many people are contributing answers (which is good) but people don't seem to be voting for them (which is bad).

Let's encourage more participation by rewarding people who take the time to write good answers. Click that vote button!


migrated from answers.onstartups.com Nov 12 '10 at 1:44

This question came from our site for entrepreneurs looking to start or run a new business.

Very true! To answer some of the below: We can't control the fact that you need 15 rep to upvote, which sucks. Therefore, AT LEAST FOR NOW, those of you who CAN upvote SHOULD, and ESPECIALLY when you see someone with less than 15 rep who makes a reasonable point. Eventually we won't need special consideration, but this is a bootstrapping problem. Thanks all! –  Jason Oct 11 '09 at 20:01
Another thing: Even we admins/moderators are still limited to 30 votes per 24 hours. Otherwise I would just fix this myself! :-/ –  Jason Oct 11 '09 at 20:06
Interesting to reflect on this question and the associated answer now just over two years later -- and the voting on this site is still significantly lower (who has the research on this?) that the other StalkExchange sites I visit. –  Joseph Barisonzi Oct 14 '11 at 2:36
And now, 2 YEARS LATER, people still don't vote. Fear of competition? This community is profoundly sick and should be dissolved. –  fobo Nov 23 '11 at 13:30
@fobo - I agree - this site is pretty much on life support. –  TimJ Nov 26 '11 at 4:00

17 Answers 17

Sorry folks. I don't agree with the 15 rep points to vote on things, but that's the default in the software and there's no way to change it.

So, it'll take a little while for enough people to accrue sufficient rep points (and thereby cause others to get the needed points too). The site's only two days old -- so hopefully within a few days, we'll be at a decent level of momentum.

I think the 15pt rep to vote is a great idea. It's a barrier to entry to prevent spam ... but it'd be nice if you could disable it until you started getting a majority of users with enough rep to vote. –  John MacIntyre Oct 21 '09 at 2:15
Huh? There's no way to change that? You have got to be kidding. –  B Seven Nov 20 '11 at 1:13

I'm learning a lot from this site and would love to vote on some of the really excellent posts here, but I'm at a reputation of 1. If anybody would be so inclined to give me an upvote here I would be happy to start voting.

You can review my rep and voting on my SO page:


Done! Vote away ... –  Neil Davidson Oct 20 '09 at 9:56
+1, and now it's done. :-) I'm stackoverflow.com/users/84416/basicallymoney-com –  Chris W. Rea Oct 21 '09 at 1:32
and with my awesome 21 rep I'm off to vote... thanks!! –  Mark Harrison Oct 21 '09 at 3:59

You need 15 rep to upvote. It took me a little while to get that... but I upvoted your question, so you'll be that much closer :-)


I am trying to upvote, but yeah we need more rep points ;)

+1 for... no good reason other than to get you closer to 15 ;-) –  Alex Papadimoulis Oct 11 '09 at 20:47
thanks, now I can post comments too :D –  Anonymous Oct 12 '09 at 19:54

Perhaps they need a way to get the point economy started. It is hard to value questions an answers when they all have 0 votes. Perhaps they could allow people to vote on question until a total of, say, 1000 point of rep are awarded.

I have been doing some poking around some of the StackExchange sites, as a long time StackOverflow user, I am not used to not being able to vote.

This site appears to have enough rep around to start to function like it is supposed to work. I know of a site where there is a net of 10 points earned and where the "Tumbleweed" is the most popular badge.


OK, good point. I'll do more of that. This posting was useful in that I wasn't sure what the voting was about or why I should bother, so thanks for that.



In addition to up-voting good questions and answers, I've also been a little more generous here up-voting people with only 1 or 11 reputation so they could get to the threshold of 15 that would enable them, in turn, to vote for others. You can find these people by looking at the user list, which is sorted by reputation.

So folks, please vote! The OP is right, the voting improves the experience with this platform.

UPDATE: I just used up my daily vote allotment again up-voting users with less than 15 rep who demonstrated at least a clue in asking/answering a question.


You also need a certain number of points to add new tags I see (is that 15 points as well?) which was slightly annoying as a question I just posted required a new tag.


I realized that you needed knew that you needed a certain amount of reputation to upvote so was worried that I could only upvote a limited number of times.


The reason why there is less vote here I reckon because some of the question is really subjective. This is quite different compared to stackoverflow where you can get one definite answer.

I think to make new users to be able to vote is to up-vote a question. That way new user will have some point in the bank.


This question is old and for some (like me) the voting concept is new. Think about how many are not enmeshed in web2.0 like I guess you guys are - LOL. Plus At this point apparently I have a teacher badge and it says I should check my profile... um - some day I might. Plus to vote I have to login... again - some day :)

Great site though, Dharmesh - which is why I don't mind answering.

I would add that it's very useful for people to get many perspectives - not necessarily to have other people vote on previous answers for them (yet?). If the voting is truly helpful to you, you might want to communicate to everyone (say in a LinkedIn discussion - or even via a new question/answer here) why it's important to [go through the trouble and] vote.



hahaha this is a great question. Congratulations Dennis!

Now more seriously. I know that it would be nice to have more positive votes, but scarcity sometimes is what makes good stuff more valuable. So my answer is about moderation. I do want people to vote, but at the same time, I want people to vote ONLY for what they HONESTLY believe is a good answer. Otherwise, everybody´s reputation will be artificially inflated and therefore useless (pretty much like grades in grad school).


There are a number of posts about this on meta.stackexchange.com - see, for instance, this one. I would post links to others but as a newbie I'm limited to one/message. Hmm...

Interestingly, another StackExchange-based startup-oriented site I just started poking around in (startups.com) has exactly the same problem. Worse yet, some people have given me great answers for my questions there, and I can't vote for them!

Does anyone have experience with other Q&A sites? Is this particular to the ones focused on start-ups (perhaps because the questions asked tend to be more subjective and have no right answer), or is it just a function of age? Terribly ironic if communities of people distinguished by their ability to get new companies off the ground are not getting, well, the community off the ground...


I also suffered the "couldn't create new tags" problem, so if anyone wishes to upvote this answer to give me new powers, feel free.


I am in the same boat with only 1 point. I posted a few answers already. And I feel they deserve at least a point each :)

See here: http://answers.onstartups.com/users/2694/bill-paetzke

Ask and you shall receive. I gave you one already. –  jpartogi Feb 26 '10 at 8:22
Thanks, I appreciate it. –  Bill Paetzke Feb 26 '10 at 8:26

I'm going to duplicate others' answers in the hope that it'll get me more rep, so that I can vote instead of polluting the site with answers posted only to get rep...


I think it is because there is no "right" answer. In contrast to Stack Overflow where you often have at least one "right" answer, or at least a clear distinction between good and bad answers. One person can do something and succeed in their start-up, and someone else can do the same exact thing and not succeed. There are many complex and uncontrollable factors involved.

Also, maybe it's because most people are voting with knowledge that they have gained through reading books or blogs or posts. To have true first-hand start-up success you would have to build a reasonably profitable company, and perhaps most of the would-be voters are not there yet (including myself). Without first-hand experience, you don't really know what works.


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